Volkswagen, Smart, Changan, GM, Renault.
Meet the Golf GTE: Volkswagen has baptised its first plug-in hybrid. The Golf GTE is scheduled for mid-2014 and is one of the steps towards VW’s aim to become market leader in the electric car segment by 2018. The company has announced to emphasise its electric endeavours in March at its “electrified” event for investors, press and public. For two weeks the former Berlin Tempelhof airfield will become a hub of information on e-mobility made by Volkswagen, including test riding opportunities.
autozeitung.de (In German), volkswagen-media-services.com (In German), telegraph.co.uk (Golf GTE review)
Smartest, smallest, cheapest and the only convertible e-car available in the U.S. Reasons enough for John Voelcker to take the latest version of the Smart ED for a test-ride. He found the drive of the heavier car to be “far smoother” compared to gasoline models and better to handle, too. Only the interior Voelcker rated as “seriously outdated.”
New hybrid for China: Changan Motors will launch its Eado Hybrid to their home market by February. The sedan for 130,000 yuan (21,500 dollars) is positioned against BYD’s Qin, which retails from 180,000 yuan (30,000 dollars).
Luxury leasing: GM released lease prices for the Cadillac ELR. They start at 699 dollars per month with a 6,000 dollar deposit and 39-month leasing term. Miles are limited to 32,500 during the lease period, which breaks down to 10,000 miles per year. While BMW has not confirmed a final price for leasing its i3, a customer received a quote of 930 dollars, with a cap at 12,000 miles a year. Tesla Model S’ lease prices range from 1,100 to 1,250 dollars per month.
green.autoblog.com (Caddy ELR), greencarreports.com (BMW i3), plugincars.com (Comparison)
Renault Twizy re-reviewed: Nikki-Gordon Bloomfield was one of the first to jump on the Twizy-bandwagon but soon discovered it was not a car she “could live with everyday.” However, she has not given up on the Twizy entirely and now found a better use for the little racer: “weekend jollies in the countryside.”